What Happens When An Insurance Company Buys A Fast Food Company

What happens when an insurance company buys a fast food company

Have you ever dealt with your insurance company and gotten frustrated?  Ha!  I realize this may be an understated question.

I got to thinking about the whole insurance customer service thing the other night and began to wonder what the world would be like if an insurance company took over fast food giant McBurgers (not their real name).

It’s asking simple questions like this that lead us into deep insights.  Like when Einstein was a boy and ask what the universe would look like if he rode on a beam of light.  Okay, never mind, that’s a really stupid question and all it got him was a bad haircut, but an insurance company takeover of McBurgers is clearly important to ponder.

Let’s say you wanted to order a cheeseburger.

For starters, I’m sure you would never be able to actually talk to anyone.  You’d have to dial in your order and talk to an ICVR (Inane Computer Voice Response program).  The discussion might start off like this …

ICVR.  “Please enter your 33 digit account number with the first three digits backwards followed by a hyphen and then the square root of all the other numbers.”
ICVR.  “All agents are busy, please stay on the line.  We value your business.” (this is repeated for thirty minutes).  Then finally …
ICVR. “Please listen to all of our menu options because they have changed … If you want a CB-#1, press 1, if you want a CB-#2, press 2, if you want a BM-#0, press 3, if you want a FF-#1 press 4, if you want a MS-#1 press 5 …” ad nauseum (author’s note: they don’t actually say ad nauseum, I was just illustrating this goes on for a long time and you are starting to feel nauseumed).

Okay, you get the picture of how this starts out.  So you just push some buttons hoping you ordered something.  Then there is a question about your co-pay.  You pay that and then you fumble around to get your Burger Insurance Plan card because you have to enter your Plan Code.  After you enter your Plan Code you are told this McDonald’s location is not in your network and you will have to drive to another location.

You drive to another location and have to do everything all over again.  Now let’s take the happy path here and assume you finally get your cheeseburger, because this story could go on for a long time in this target rich environment.

A week later you get you Burger Insurance Bill in the mail.  It says you had a CB-#2 (whatever that is) which they paid $.50 for, and you may owe $1.00 (see notes 3 and 4 on the reverse of the statement if you have Plan Codes ending in B and sometimes Z1).  Also they think you owe $.25.  And you still have $350 to go on your deductible before they begin to pay the full 80% of your burger expenses (you will still need to pay the other 20%).

Okay, so that’s pretty straight forward, so you take a wild-ass guess and send them $2.00.  Thirty days later you get a statement saying you are late on your payment, and to please pay the remaining $1.75, or your Burger Insurance coverage will be canceled if payment is not received by 11:59:59 PM within 10 days.


I guess that’s about all of the deep insights I can take on this subject for now.  So what’s my take away from this important thought experiment?

Well, I now have a deep and abiding respect for the current Fast Food Industry.  That about sums it up.

How about you?  Any insurance stories to report (chuckle).

J. Daniel (fumbling for his Burger Co-Pay amount while filling out a 47 page claim form).

P.S. We didn’t even get into insurance doughnut holes, but that’s another story for another time.

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